CPR Rules On the Horizon: Learn How Belden is Preparing

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In late 2015, we first announced that new rules were being implemented by the European Commission (EC). These rules call for construction products – including cabling for fixed installations – to be tested and certified according to Construction Products Regulation (CPR) rules. If construction products haven’t gone through this testing and certification, they can no longer be used in European buildings or civil engineering works.

Although the CPR rules came into effect on June 10, 2016, the industry was given a grace period to comply – but that grace period is about to come to an end on July 1, 2017. There are just a few months left before all European buildings and civil engineering works must follow CPR rules.

KV_Logo-European-CommWhat CPR Rules Call For

As stated by the EC, the reasons behind the CPR rules include:

  • Eliminating technical barriers (many different national
    standards that reference different test methods being
    used within individual European countries) between
    European Union member states for products used in
    buildings and civil works
  • Providing a classification system that reflects performance
    in a real-life environment

For wiring and cabling, the CPR rules apply to fixed installation cabling and currently measure reaction to fire only. The results of product testing and certification indicate how much a cable contributes to a fire and its harmful consequences, as well as how long a cable can continue to function adequately in a fire.

Analyzed in a simulated environment, each product is tested for flame spread, heat release, flaming droplets, smoke emission and corrosiveness of combustion gases. Product performance determines which Euroclass system it belongs to. The seven Euroclasses reflect real-life environments for building products based on reaction-to-fire performance.

Belden Prepares for CPR Rules

To make sure all Belden cabling products comply with necessary CPR rules, Belden has been working diligently.

By making investments in state-of-the-art equipment and dedicated resources, we’ve set up an in-house testing site in Venlo, The Netherlands, to measure Belden cabling product reaction to fire tests per EN 50399 standards, including:

  • Belden_CPR-Blog_Motiv2neuHeat release
  • Flame spread
  • Smoke production
  • Flaming droplets

Following a demanding test schedule, Belden cables will be tested by the end of March. By the end of May, these Belden products will be tested and certified to comply with CPR rules. Many cables are currently already being supplied to our customers in line with all CPR requirements.

We’ve also made back-office preparations to get ready to properly serve customers with all of their CPR responsibilities and requests. We’re adjusting:

  • Databases and online generators
  • Labeling, CE markings and cable printing
  • Part numbers and pricing

By conducting training, providing clear guidance/information on CPR and post product sales support to our partners, we are also making sure they’re prepared as well.

From end-users and consultants to systems integrators and distributors, Belden has the resources and knowledge to help you successfully comply with the new CPR requirements once the grace period has lapsed on July 1. To learn more, visit http://info.belden.com/cpr.

 

Data Centre World: Learn About Open Bridge Racks and Open Compute

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There’s just one week left until thousands of data centre professionals meet at ExCeL London for Data Centre World. Belden is excited to be a Gold sponsor at this event, exhibiting at Stand H42 to show you how to make your data centre more flexible, agile, cost efficient and intelligent.

This event is known as the world’s largest, most influential gathering of data centre experts. If you have questions about data centre design and buildout, power and energy efficiency, physical security, automation, fire and security, or routing and switching, you’ll find the answers you need at Data Centre World (free tickets available here).

In addition to sponsoring, Belden will also lead two Data Centre World seminars: one focused on DCIM/AIM intelligent physical layer management (March 15) and one focused on the Open Compute Project and Belden’s Open Bridge Rack (March 16).

Because Open Compute is such a hot data centre topic, we wanted to provide some background information on the subject, and give you a sneak peek into the much-anticipated seminar.

OCP-community-logoWhat is the Open Compute Project?

The Open Compute Project (OCP) is an organization that facilitates the sharing of data centre product designs among different companies. It is made up of several working groups that focus on different areas: data centres, storage, hardware management, servers, etc.

Through information sharing, the hope is to give data centre professionals more choices, more customization options and significant cost savings through better efficiency, flexibility and scalability. It started with Facebook sharing its data centre designs with the public in 2011; now the OCP community is rapidly growing and continuing to share more ideas and specifications.

Some of the OCP design principles include:

  • Locating installation and service operations in the cold aisle for better technician comfort
  • Locating data cables on the front of the rack for easier maintenance
  • Identifiable component faults from the front of the rack for faster troubleshooting
  • Routine service procedures that don’t require tools to save time
  • Non-recyclable components when possible to protect the environment
  • Vanity-free designs to emphasize function instead of aesthetics
  • Integrating racks directly into air-containment solutions for improved space efficiency

During our Data Centre World presentation on March 16, Belden Product Marketing Manager Christos Birbilis will provide real-world examples of OCP benefits as compared to more traditional methods:

  • Improved power solutions that simplify maintenance and management, and reduce total loss through different electrical schemes
  • Improved thermal designs that use server waste heat for office space heating and eliminate the need for HVAC ductwork and centralized chiller plants

What is the Open Bridge Rack?

Although it’s just one data centre component, OCP hardware adoption starts with the rack. Open Racks are available, but they can pose challenges to data centres that want to slowly phase into OCP. With Open Racks, it’s all or nothing – they fit OCP equipment only.

Belden’s Open Bridge Rack, however, accommodates two standards: EIA and OCP. It looks like a standard rack from the outside, but is designed on the inside to switch back and forth between these two configurations while on the data centre floor – even if racks are ganged together. It also complies with security regulations through cabinet-level access control and locking doors/side panels.

During Belden’s OCP session, we’ll explain how you can convert a 19” Open Bridge Rack from an EIA configuration to OCP so you can understand how it works and how easy it is to make the conversion.

The session will also cover:

  • The impact of OCP on IT gear and mounting racks
  • How the Open Bridge Rack allows transition from EIA to OCP rails
  • OCP vs. EIA equipment-mounting standards
  • Migration paths from EIA to OCP
  • Containment options for high-density computing, cold- vs. hot-aisle containment and chimney containment

Visit Belden at Data Centre World, Stand H42, to learn how to make your data centre more flexible, agile, cost efficient and intelligent. Sign up to receive a complimentary Data Centre World ticket here.

For more information about Belden’s extensive product portfolio, OCP or the solutions we’ll discuss at Data Centre World, visit www.beldensolutions.com or email enterprisesales.emea@belden.com

 

Belden Gets Ready for Data Centre World

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Data Centre World in London is just around the corner, being held March 15-16 at ExCeL London. More than 600 industry professionals will gather with thousands of attendees at this worldwide event to discuss and provide insight on the data centres of tomorrow.

Organizations like GE Critical Power, Groupon, Institute of Thermofluids, Intel, Spotify, Symphony and Wisetek will share their insights and data centre success stories, explaining how they solved tough challenges and positioned themselves for continued growth.

The Live Green Data Centre is also returning this year, bringing a fully functioning, interactive data centre to the heart of Data Centre World. You can walk through the data centre and learn about the systems in place – from flooring and generators to racks and perimeter fencing – that make it truly sustainable and successful.

Belden is a Gold sponsor at this free event, showcasing ways we help enterprise data centres transition to hyperscale data centres that offer flexibility, agility, cost efficiency and intelligence. Get an up-close look at our extensive product portfolio, which provides energy efficiency, security, uninterrupted availability and high-quality performance. We’ll be highlighting our:

  • PatchPro® Intelligent Layer Management AIM Solution, a pre-terminated fiber MPO and 10GX intelligence-ready connectivity solution
  • Pre-terminated fiber and copper cabling solutions, such as FiberExpress MPO and 10GX systems, and the new REVConnect connectivity solution that lets you switch between jacks and plugs without re-terminating cable
  • Open Bridge Rack, a futureproof data center rack solution that can be converted in a flash to meet Open Compute requirements

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Belden will also host two free seminar sessions at Data Centre World:


Wednesday, March 15

DCIM/AIM Intelligent Physical Layer Management

Presented by: Christos Birbilis, Belden Product Marketing Manager

Location: Data Centre Design and Build & Physical Security Theatre

Attendees will learn about:

  • Real-time network security and transparency
  • Benefits of monitoring, reporting and analytics
  • DCIM/AIM physical layer management software that maintains system accuracy and makes deployment easier
  • Ways to facilitate audits, troubleshooting and changes

Thursday, March 16

Open Rack Design for Open Compute (OCP)

Presented by: Christos Birbilis, Belden Product Marketing Manager

Location: Facilities and Critical Equipment Theatre

Attendees will learn about:

  • The impact of OCP on IT gear and mounting racks
  • How the Open Bridge Rack allows transition from TIA/EIA to OCP rails
  • OCP vs. TIA/EIA equipment-mounting standards
  • Migration paths from TIA/EIA to OCP
  • Containment options for high-density computing, cold- vs. hot-aisle containment and chimney containment

Visit Belden at Stand H42 at Data Centre World to learn how to make your data centre more flexible, agile, cost efficient and intelligent. Sign up to receive a complimentary Data Centre World ticket.


 

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Blog # 4: Construction Products Regulation: What Does it Mean for You? – Part I

KV_Logo European CommWith new rules being implemented by the European Commission (EC), construction products – including cabling for fixed installations – can no longer be used in European buildings or civil engineering works if they are not tested and certified according to the new Construction Products Regulation (CPR) rules.

Although this may seem like something that mainly affects cable manufacturers, it’s equally as important for specifiers, designers, builders and building owners, distributors and importers, as they all have new responsibilities once CPR becomes effective.

Blog #4 in our CPR blog series focuses on the CPR obligations of specifiers, designers, builders and building owners.

Since CPR does not only apply to cable manufacturers, it is important that the parties at the receiving end of the supply chain (end-users) also fully understand their roles in ensuring CPR compliance.

According to the new CPR rules, specifiers, designers, builders and building owners should refer to the harmonized technical specifications (specifically to the requirements of individual characteristics) when working with the project team to draw up specifications.

When choosing products for construction projects, end-users should review the Declaration of Conformity/Performance (DoP) from the manufacturer. They must also check national annexes or standard recommendations, which offer guidance about appropriate minimum product performance levels. Furthermore, compliance with any additional local building regulations should also be followed by end-users.

As an industry-leading cable manufacturer, Belden sees it as our responsibility to educate and support the complete value chain on specific CPR tasks. As CPR awareness increases in the European market, and understanding of the additional responsibilities that come with CPR are still limited, we are committed to working with everyone in the value chain, from end-users and consultants to systems integrators and distributors, to provide education and information about CPR requirements.

Please visit info.belden.com/cpr for more information.

Cabling Systems Get Ready for New CPR Rules

The EC’s Construction Products Regulation (CPR) rules apply to many construction products, including wire and cabling.

With these new rules from the European Commission (EC), construction products – including cabling – can no longer be used in European buildings if they are not tested and certified based on specific criteria. Read more »

Don’t Compromise on Category 6A Cabling

The benefits of IP convergence are many (fewer maintenance requirements, reduced operations costs, etc.). By investing in a 10Gb/s cabling solution that supports high-density, high-bandwidth applications, you can support excellent network performance and ensure that your convergence investments will work now and in the future.

When selecting a futureproof cabling solution, there are certain cabling characteristics you shouldn’t be willing to compromise on. Read more »

CPR: A Major Change in How EU Construction Products are Sold

KV_Logo European CommThe construction industry is facing a significant transformation regarding how construction products are sold in Europe. New rules implemented by the European Commission (EC) call for products – including cables– to be tested and certified based on certain criteria before they are used in European buildings.

The Construction Products Regulation (CPR) rules ensure that the construction industry uses similar language to describe product information from manufacturers in different countries when referring to performance, specifying requirements or selecting products.

Here are a few examples of how the new CPR rules can bring positive change to the construction industry. Read more »

Construction Products Regulation: What is it?

With new rules being implemented by the European Commission (EC), construction products – including cabling for fixed installations – can no longer be used in European buildings or civil engineering works if they are not tested and certified according to the new Construction Products Regulation (CPR) rules.

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The EC’s CPR rules ensure that distributors, consultants, systems integrators, installers and building owners now have reliable product information from different manufacturers in different countries. CPR provides one common language that manufacturers can use when talking about performance of their product. This same language will  also have to be used by architects, engineers, contractors and member states when specifying requirements and selecting products.

Replacing the Construction Products Directive (CPD), which was first published by the EC in 1989, CPR is already applicable for non-cable products since July 2013. The official CPR introduction for cables has officially come into force as of June 10, 2016 with the transition period ending on July. 1, 2017.

CPR combines the common technical language with an agreed system of Assessment and Verification of Constancy of Performance, a framework of Certified Notified Bodies and Mandatory CE Marking.

CPR provides a framework of potential assessment criteria in the following areas:

  1. Mechanical resistance and stability
  2. Safety in the case of fire
  3. Hygiene, health and the environment
  4. Safety in use
  5. Protection against noise
  6. Energy economy and heat retention

Cable product performance is covered in the 2nd requirement that focuses on fire safety ,which includes “Reaction to Fire” (How much  a cable contributes to a fire and its harmful  consequences) and “Resistance to Fire” (For how long a cable can continue to function in case of a fire). Initially CPR is only being implemented for cable performance related to “Reaction to fire.”

Cables will be evaluated based on their performance in a simulated installation, with simultaneous measurements of flame spread, heat release, flaming droplets, smoke emission and corrosivity of gases. They are then placed into the correct Euroclass system based on performance in the following areas: 

  • Flame spread
  • Smoke production
  • Burning falling particles (droplets)
  • Corrosiveness/acidity of combustion gases

For cable manufacturers CPR means that they need to have their cables tested according to the new requirements, provide a Declaration of Performance according to the new Euroclasses, affix a CE Marking to the product and periodically control production.

Although it may seem like CPR only applies to manufacturers, it’s equally as important for everyone in the construction industry to use and understand. Make sure to look out for the following Belden blogs that provide further details about CPR and will explain what CPR means for you. You can learn more about CPR at our dedicated micro-site.

Installing Category 6A: The Future is Now

Category6A-FutureCategory 6A twisted-pair copper received much attention when it first hit the marketplace in 2005. But adoption has been slow, since the 10 gigabit per second (Gb/s) capacity of Category 6A exceeds the requirements of most LAN applications. However, times are now changing. Data rates in the enterprise continue to climb. More devices than ever are being connected. Emerging applications demand higher performance and faster speeds. And those trends haven’t escaped the notice of industry standards bodies.

Let’s look at these new applications and requirements — and see if Category 6A is the future for your network.   Read more »

6 Key Considerations When Choosing Category 6A Cable

Last week’s blog post covered the uses for Category 6A cable, including emerging applications and recommendations for adoption by industry standards bodies. This week, we take a look at the factors that go into the choice of a Category 6A cable. While all Category 6A products must meet the same base set of specifications, they are surprisingly different in their physical properties, and how well they deliver at the extremes of performance. Those extremes are important, because the extremes of today are the expectations of tomorrow.   Here are the key considerations to weigh when choosing a Category 6A cable. Read more »

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